Arizona senator doubles down on crypto amid the winter of discontent: Law Decoded, Jan. 23-30


Although this winter continues to test the case for Bitcoin (BTC), some legislators are striving to put their names on the crypto hot list among United States Senators Cynthia Lummis and Pat Toomey. State Senator Wendy Rogers, 68, has introduced two bold bills in the Arizona legislature. One focuses on make BTC legal tender in the US state. If signed into law, BTC will have the same status as the US dollar, becoming an accepted medium of exchange for payment of debts, government charges, taxes and fees in the state. The bill is not Rogers’ first attempt to make BTC legal tender, with a similar bill defeated in 2022.

Rogers also participated in the presentation of a bill that seeks make cryptocurrencies a tax-exempt property in the state. Along with Senators Sonny Borrelli and Justine Wadsack, Rogers proposed letting Arizonans decide to amend the state constitution regarding property taxes. If the measure passes the legislature, voters could choose to make digital currencies, specifically tokens that are not “a representation of the United States dollar or a foreign currency,” tax-exempt.

Although not quite as bold, another major bill was introduced to the New York State Assembly. The bill would allow state agencies accept cryptocurrencies as a form of payment of fines, civil penalties, taxes, fees and other payments collected by the state. The bill does not require state agencies to accept cryptocurrency as payment, but clarifies that state agencies can legally agree to accept such payments and that courts must enforce these agreements.

The fate of the crypto legislation will be decided by the Supreme Court of Panama

Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo sent the crypto legislation passed last year to the high court for review, claiming that the so-called “crypto bill” is unenforceable and violates a fundamental principle of the constitution. President Cortizo also argued that the bill had been approved through an improper procedure following his partial veto of the legislation in June 2022. At the time, the president argued that the bill needed more work to comply with the new regulations recommended by the International Financial Action Task Force. to improve fiscal transparency and prevent money laundering.

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South Korea to implement a cryptocurrency tracking system in 2023

The South Korean Ministry of Justice has announced plans to introduce a crypto-monitoring system to counter money laundering initiatives and recover funds linked to criminal activities. The “Virtual Currency Tracking System” will be used to monitor transaction history, extract information related to transactions, and verify the origin of funds before and after shipment. While the system is scheduled to roll out in the first half of 2023, the South Korean ministry shared plans to develop an independent monitoring and analysis system in the second half of the year.

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US Securities Regulator Probes Wall Street Over Crypto Custody

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been investigating traditional Wall Street investment advisers who may offer custody of digital assets to their clients without proper qualifications. Much of the SEC’s efforts in this investigation examine whether registered investment advisers have complied with rules and regulations regarding the custody of clients’ crypto assets. By law, investment advisory firms must be “qualified” to offer custodial services to clients and meet the custodial guarantees set forth in the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

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